Thursday, July 19, 2007

Terror Act at Funeral in Ingushetia

from Kommersant.com

Investigators suspect Wahhabi field commanders Magomed-Bashir Albakov and Khas-Magomed Apiev of the murder of Terekhina and her children Maria and Vadim as well as of planting the bomb at their funeral. Albakov and Apiev were responsible for a number of attacks last year on Russians living in Sunzha District, Ingushetia, on the border of Chechnya. Police with bomb-sniffing dogs combed the cemetery before the funeral. An internal investigation will determine why the bomb was not discovered at that time. The Terekhins were killed on Sunday night by a man who entered their apartment through an open window and demanded money. They were shot with a pistol equipped with a silencer. The elder Terekhina's brother, who is blind, was left unharmed.

HRW calls for release of Saudi divorcee

from REUTERS

US-based Human Rights Watch called on Saudi Arabia yesterday to release a woman forcibly divorced by a court because her family claimed her husband's tribal lineage was not good enough for them ... The couple's young son is in prison in the Gulf coast city of Dammam with his mother, while the father has been given custody of their young daughter ... Saudi Arabia rules by an austere school of Islamic law often called Wahhabism, and judges in family courts are themselves religious scholars. But the case shocked Saudi liberals and became a cause celebre in the media.

How Big a Problem?

by Dean Barnett from Townhall.com

If popular elections were held in Saudi Arabia, a Wahhabist group ideologically akin to Al Qaeda would prevail. The House of Saud doesn’t spend all that time and money buying off the Fundamentalists (who hate the House of Saud as much as they hate Israel) because they have all sorts of warm fuzzies for the Jihadists. In exchange for House of Saud generously allowing Sharia be the law of the land in Saudi Arabia, the Fundamentalists tolerate the House of Saud. At least for now.

How to Win in Iraq

by William S. Lind from The American Conservative

The one chance of victory we have left is to get out of the way of Muqtada al-Sadr and anyone else in Iraq who might be able to re-create an Iraqi state, praying fervently that they succeed. Having failed in our own efforts, it is time to give the Iraqis and Dame Fortune our place at the gaming table. Some may object that a rapprochement with Iran coupled with allowing al-Sadr or someone like him to become the leader of a restored Iraqi state will upset the Sunni regimes in the Middle East. Indeed it may, but that is not our problem. There is little the Sunni states can do about it, given the regions’s geography. Syria is in a position to support a continued insurgency by Iraqi Sunnis, but Syria is ruled by an Alawite clique, and the Alawites are offshoots of Shi’ism. The Saudis will be both angry and terrified, but beyond supplying Iraq’s Sunni insurgents with money and volunteers, which they are already doing, they cannot intervene. Saudi Arabia’s armed forces are a joke, and overt Saudi military intervention in Iraq would quickly fail. All the other Sunni states are too far away to do anything effective.

End of Dreams, Return of History

by Robert Kagan from Real Clear Politics

Should the United States support autocracy in the Middle East? That is the only other choice, after all. There is no neutral stance on such matters. The United States is either supporting an autocracy, through aid, recognition, amicable diplomatic relations, and regular economic intercourse, or it is using its manifold influence in varying degrees to push for democratic reform. The number of American thinkers who believe that the United States should simply support Middle Eastern autocrats and not push for change at all is small, and the number of policymakers and politicians who support that view is even smaller. After September 11, 2001, most observers agreed that American support for autocratic regimes in Egypt and Saudi Arabia was the "principal source of resentment" of the terrorists who launched the attack on the United States and that, therefore, a policy of simply supporting autocrats in those and other Middle Eastern countries would be a mistake.

Education the best counter for radicalism

by Muhammad Wildan from The Jakarta Post

In my view, the inability of religious followers to face modernity eventually leads them to such radicalism. Therefore, it is the task of the government to let all Muslims get involved in the mainstream. The return of some Muslims to salafism (which advocates Muslims to return to the Koran and Hadith), in a way, is a sign of Muslims' rejection of modernity and globalization. It is the ideology of salafism that restricts the access of Muslims to modern values. Therefore, only higher education can accelerate Indonesian Muslims' move to moderation.

Stand up to Saudi Arabia, local Iraqis demand

by Krista J. Kapralos from The Washington Herald

A group of about 50 Iraqis who live in Everett gathered Tuesday in downtown Seattle's Westlake Center to protest the U.S. government's alliance with Saudi Arabia. Holding signs accusing Saudi Arabia's leaders of crimes against humanity, they urged voters to pressure legislators to hold the Middle Eastern kingdom accountable for the number of Saudi terrorists killing people in Iraq. "We know the U.S. is a friend to Saudi Arabia, and something must be done about it," said Adil al Rikabi, a man considered by many of the region's Iraqis as their leader. "As Americans, as people who have their citizenship, we're asking the government to make a decision about its alliance with Saudi Arabia." ... Everything was being broadcast live on a Baghdad radio station, he said.